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Ludum Dare Warm-Up Post Mortem
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1:09 pm
August 13, 2012


quill18

Ontario, Canada

Admin

posts 559

This weekend I spent 4-5 hours livestreaming a personal warm-up for Ludum Dare to make sure that my workflow in Unity 3d and Blender was ready to meet the challenge of another game jam.  I may do another warm-up this upcoming weekend as well.

 

The Good:

  • My Unity knowledge seems up to snuff, even when it comes to doing new things that I haven't explicitly done before.
  • Even though I didn't finish the game (which was never my intention during the warm-up), I created a LOT of content in about 4 hours. I'm working much, much faster than the last time I used Unity for Ludum Dare. Both because I'm more familiar with the tools, but also because I think I'm structuring my content better.
  • I can whip out (very ugly) 3d models in Blender extremely quickly, which is good.  Animating a convincing walk cycle is still probably out of line for a 48 hour competition, but I'm happy that I can have more than cubes and capsules this time.
The Bad:
  • Focusing too much on the "theme" before deciding on the "gameplay".  It's too easy for me to get overly focused on mechanics and simulation and to forget that I need a game in there.
  • Not deciding on a single aesthetic first. None of my models really looked like each other — they weren't even the same size. I need to keep this in mind a little sooner.
  • Finding out that there's no native IK support in Unity 3d, which is a real shame. I don't have the experience to write an IK Solver in a 48 hour compo either.  It would have opened up some interesting possibilities.
The Ugly:
  • I got really frustrated trying to sort out the "gameplay" issue and even snapped at the livestream chat, which is very much not okay. I was feeling overwhelmed by trying to read so much chat and filter ideas. Taking a 10 minute was all I needed to sort out my brain, get some inspiration, and be balanced and level-headed again.  I need to schedule more breaks, especially early on when we're still in the "idea" phase.  Walks are good. (Also, it helped to turn off the mic/camera for a little while and just get "in the zone" with the programming for a bit, rather than try to entertain people.)
The Unknown:
  • Is it good, bad, or ugly to use a well-established gameplay mechanic ("tower defense") and just try to adapt it to a theme?  On the one hand, how many truly unique gameplay mechanics exist out there? Most things are just something that already exists (first-person, platformer, rts, 4x, side-scroller, etc…) with a twist.  Trying to come up with something completely innovative is hard/impossible in general, and to come up with something spontaneously AND finding a good way to implement it in 48 hours is probably idiotic.  Many of the best and most original LD submissions (and artistic/original indie games) ARE things like platformers with a twist.  Braid, VVVVVV, and Super Meat Boy are — in many ways — basic platformers. And yet they stand out as completely unique at the same time.  
Personally, after the more relaxed pacing of my LD22 and LD23 games, I think I want to make something quite a bit more action-packed and adrenaline-inducing this time around.

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I'm just a dude with Fraps and too much spare time.

4:58 pm
August 13, 2012


Niicks

Toronto

Member

posts 198

Maybe you can make a sort of 2d sidescroller platforming shooter?  Thinking Galaga meets Super Mario?

 

Upgradable weapons with branching ship/whatever paths maybe.  New idea's are often fusions of old ones :D

When in danger, Or in doubt

Run in circles, Scream and shout  -  Myself

6:39 pm
August 13, 2012


quill18

Ontario, Canada

Admin

posts 559

Niicks said:

Maybe you can make a sort of 2d sidescroller platforming shooter?  Thinking Galaga meets Super Mario?

 

Upgradable weapons with branching ship/whatever paths maybe.  New idea's are often fusions of old ones :D

Platformers and sidescrollers are both fun, but I'm not sure how it combines?

Is the movement platformer style, but the enemy spawning/attacks like a shmup?

I'm just a dude with Fraps and too much spare time.

7:44 pm
August 13, 2012


Roughshot

Saskatchewan

Member

posts 3

I enjoyed watching you work on this and was wondering if you would be willing to put together a Quill18Creates video or series on creating a TD game similar to the one on the stream, I would be very interested to watch and learn from something like that.  Your time permitting of course.Smile

8:01 pm
August 13, 2012


CameOutofDaTrees

Member

posts 20

I have to agree roughshot it was really fun and it would be fun to see a series on quill18creates about the td game

I am the wisest of all the Greeks. It is because I alone, of all the Greeks, know that I know nothing.”
– Socrates

8:20 pm
August 13, 2012


Niicks

Toronto

Member

posts 198

Post edited 8:21 pm – August 13, 2012 by Niicks


quill18 said:

Platformers and sidescrollers are both fun, but I'm not sure how it combines?

Is the movement platformer style, but the enemy spawning/attacks like a shmup?
 
 
 
Yea, a little like that.  Platforming elements with spawning and encroaching enemies from one/both/all sides.  Variable weapon systems as well as movement ability.
 

When in danger, Or in doubt

Run in circles, Scream and shout  -  Myself

9:55 pm
August 13, 2012


quill18

Ontario, Canada

Admin

posts 559

Roughshot said:

I enjoyed watching you work on this and was wondering if you would be willing to put together a Quill18Creates video or series on creating a TD game similar to the one on the stream, I would be very interested to watch and learn from something like that.  Your time permitting of course.Smile

Yeah, that would be fun.  I've looked at the footage from the weekend, and it's not really in a state that would be good as-is, so it would have to be a fresh project, but I'm definitely considering it.

I'm just a dude with Fraps and too much spare time.

7:37 pm
August 14, 2012


CameOutofDaTrees

Member

posts 20

yea awsome quill!

I am the wisest of all the Greeks. It is because I alone, of all the Greeks, know that I know nothing.”
– Socrates

9:08 pm
August 14, 2012


digitalgreed

New Member

posts 1

I'm thoroughly enjoying the live stream–thanks!

 

What streaming software do you use to superimpose your webcam shot over the stream?

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